CDC Announces Indoor Masking No Longer Required Just Before Biden’s SOTU 

Associated Press

The indoor use of face masks is no longer required, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Friday, just before President Biden’s State of the Union Address on Tuesday.

Without a change in the science of coronavirus transmission, the CDC lowered the bar and put forth new guidance that places more than half of U.S. counties under low or medium risk of coronavirus, where masking up is no longer suggested. “That accounts for roughly 70 percent of Americans,” NBC News reported.

“We want to give people a break from things like mask wearing when levels are low, and then have the ability to reach for them again should things get worse in the future,” Dr. Rochelle Walensky said about the CDC’s mask-wearing policy that has fluctuated over two years.

“We’re in a stronger place today as a nation with more tools to protect ourselves,” she added about the vaccines that the Trump administration created.

Masks on federal transportation are still required, according to the Transportation Security Administration. But children masking at schools is no longer recommended, though the science of transmission has not changed since the beginning of the pandemic.

The CDC’s changed guidelines come as Biden will give his State of the Union speech on Tuesday. He is expected to once again declare that he has defeated the Chinese virus after doing so in the summer before the nation was hit with the Delta and Omicron variants.

With anticipation building for Biden’s speech, as 40-year-high inflation pounds the country and Russia has sparked fears of further shocks to the global financial markets, the CDC last week hinted the mask guidance may change despite the unchanging science of coronavirus transmission.

“We want to give people a break from things like mask wearing when these metrics are better, and then have the ability to reach for them should things worsen. If and when we update our guidance, we will communicate that clearly and it will be based on the data and the science,” Walensky claimed.

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